World Wrestling Entertainment executive Linda McMahon is again running for a Connecticut seat in the U.S. Senate, two years after she won the Republican nomination for the state’s other Senate seat but then lost badly to Democrat Richard Blumenthal. Chris Powell of the Manchester Journal-Inquirer, a prominent commentator on Connecticut politics, expressed scathing opinions on the type of entertainment purveyed by WWE under McMahon’s leadership, deeming it a “business of violence, pornography, and general raunch.” On Friday a WWE vice president, in a letter sent to news media throughout the state, “threatened the Journal Inquirer with a libel lawsuit.” In response, the newspaper contends that “The programs were issues in the Senate election two years ago and, by distributing its libel lawsuit threat throughout Connecticut’s news media, the McMahon campaign aims to prevent them from being mentioned this year.” [via Jared Eberle](& Rick Green, Hartford Courant)
- Big business vs. free markets again: light bulb makers “fuming” over GOP effort to restore consumer choice [Sullum] Large grocery chains like DC’s bag tax [Tim Carney]
- Eeeuw! Bystander can sue train fatality victim whose body part flew through air and hit her [Chicago Tribune]
- “Recommended Cell-Phone Ban Comes as ‘Shocking,’ ‘Heavy-Handed’ To Some” [Josh Long, V2M]
- “Exploding churros are newspaper’s fault, Chilean court rules” [AP]
- In New Jersey and North Carolina, GOP friends of trial bar block legal reform bills [Armstrong Williams, Washington Times]
- Kozinski vs. ill-prepared lawyer in case of Sheriff Arpaio vs. newspaper that covered him [The Recorder; Phoenix New Times case]
- Federal judges block cuts to in-home personal care services in California, Washington [Disability Law, San Francisco Chronicle, KQED]
- “Cleveland Browns lawyer letter is apparently real” [Lowering the Bar, earlier]
- “Headlines of the Apocalypse: ‘Lady Gaga eyes legal action over breast milk ice cream.’” [@vsalus re: Breitbart via @EdDriscoll]
- Chesley discipline prospects in Kentucky fen-phen scandal: “King of Torts Dethroned” [Laura Simons, Abnormal Use]
- Busy construction-defect lawyers vex Fresno builders [Bee, Business Journal]
- “NHTSA Postpones Back-Up Camera Requirement Rule” [The Truth About Cars, earlier]
- Lawyers in Italy call strike to protest law requiring mediation of commercial disputes [WSJ Law Blog]
- NYT’s Mark Bittman has a magical touch with food (alas) [Patrick at Popehat]
- Beasley Allen lawyers sluiced $850K to Alabama GOP judicial contender [Birmingham News via PoL]
Not long ago the U.S. Senate refused to accept an amendment to the stimulus bill by Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) that would have reformed some CPSIA provisions and delayed the implementation of others. Last night it rejected a similar DeMint effort in the form of a budget amendment, and this time there was a roll call, which confirmed that the rejection was largely along party lines: every Democrat voted against the measure except for Sens. Mark Begich (Alaska), Kay Hagan (N.C.), Amy Klobuchar (Minn.), and Ben Nelson (Neb.), while every Republican voted in favor except Susan Collins (Maine), John Cornyn (Tex.), Mike Johanns (Neb.), Mel Martinez (Fla.), and John McCain (Ariz.). Independent Bernie Sanders (Vt.) voted against, while Sens. Robert Byrd (D-W.Va.) and Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.) did not vote.
Following Wednesday’s rally on Capitol Hill, small business people who fanned out to visit their Senators brought back many encouraging-sounding stories of the favorable “We hear you!” “We get it!” reactions they had received visiting the offices of Democratic Senators like Roland Burris (Ill.), Joseph Lieberman (Conn.), Jeff Merkley (Ore.), Jay Rockefeller (W.Va.), and Charles Schumer (N.Y.). Whether or not anyone in those offices hears or gets the outcry, it sounds as if the members even more clearly hear and get a different message: that of party discipline.
Kimberly Payne feels oddly hopeful: “The original vote on the CPSIA was nearly unanimous – this one was 39-58. I call that progress!”
The WSJ editorializes on the law again today, its third, concentrating this time on the youth motorcycle/ATV ban. More: Montana senators fiddle while small businesses perish (Mark Riffey, Flathead Beacon); the rally and the Democrats (Rick Woldenberg).
Public domain image: Yankee Mother Goose (1902), illustrator Ella S. Brison, courtesy ChildrensLibrary.org.
One subtheme at the Association of Trial Lawyers of America’s annual meeting, held this summer in San Francisco, was ATLA’s big plans to develop influence within the Republican Party to go with its strong clout among the Democrats. A trial lawyer/GOP caucus expects soon to have chairpersons in all fifty states. “Asked by the lawyers how to talk to representatives who see them as the enemy,” a pollster and former Newt Gingrich aide offered several pieces of advice including, as a National Law Journal reporter paraphrases it, “tell them you want to give them money”. (David Hechler, “The Elephant and the Trial Lawyer”, National Law Journal, Aug. 5). Scheduled speakers at the meeting included Sens. Tom Daschle (D-S.D.), John Edwards (D-N.C.), John Kerry (D-Mass.), Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) and Bob Graham (D-Fla.) and Reps. Dick Gephardt (D-Mo.) and Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).